This is very sad, and also exceptionally rare…Bombardier Challenger 300 severe turbulence incidentAlways keep your seatbelts fastenedBottom lineBombardier Challenger 300 severe turbulence incidentThe National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) is investigating an incident that happened in New England on the afternoon of Friday, March 3, 2023. A Bombardier Challenger 300 was traveling from Keene, New Hampshire (EEN), to Leesburg, Virginia (JYO).The aircraft encountered some severe turbulence shortly after takeoff (around 3:35PM) on this short 382-mile flight, causing the aircraft to divert to Bradley International Airport in Connecticut (BDL). According to flight records, the aircraft spent around 25 minutes in the air before landing.There were five passengers onboard the jet, and tragically there was one fatality. The jet involved in the incident is owned by Conexon, a Kansas City-based company that provides high-speed internet to rural communities.While severe turbulence happens, it’s incredibly rare that there are fatalities resulting from this. I can’t think of the last time we had an incident where severe turbulence caused a death.It’s not yet known if the passenger who died was wearing their seatbelt or not. Generally any injuries from a severe turbulence incident result from things flying around the cabin — that could be passengers flying out of their seats, or loose objects striking passengers. The company has confirmed that the passenger who died wasn’t an employee of the company, but not much more has been revealed.The NTSB has now recovered the jet’s cockpit voice and data recorders, and is interviewing the two crew members and surviving passengers.Always keep your seatbelts fastenedMost passengers will never in their lives encounter severe turbulence, but it does happen (especially when you consider how many tens of thousands of flights operate every day). In the past several ways we’ve seen a few severe turbulence incidents.For example, on March 1, Lufthansa’s flight from Austin to Frankfurt had to divert to Washington due to severe turbulence. Several passengers sustained injuries, and had to be taken to local hospitals. Fortunately no one is in critical condition from that incident.This is a good reminder to make sure you always have your seatbelt comfortably fastened while seated, as it greatly reduces any potential injury from severe turbulence. Severe turbulence is almost always unexpected (pilots would almost never voluntarily fly through severe turbulence, especially with passengers), which is why it’s always better to be safe than sorry.Bottom lineWhile severe turbulence happens every once in a while, at worst is typically leads to non-critical injuries. Unfortunately on Friday, a business jet encountered some severe turbulence, and the NTSB is now investigating the incident. While we don’t know what exactly happened here, it’s definitely a sad reminder of the importance of always buckling up.What do you make of this severe turbulence incident?